The key battles in this week’s Chinese Super League action

Chinese Super League

This match week will give us a better idea of the prospects of the teams at the top as first takes on fourth and second battles third. First up, high-flying Shandong Luneng take on Andre Villas-Boas’ Shanghai SIPG. Shanghai were at the top this time last week but a defeat to Champions Guangzhou has dropped them down to fourth. Hulk and Co. will be looking to stop the dream start Shandong has enjoyed so far.

The other big match this week is the Guangzhou Derby. Second-placed Guangzhou R&F will be putting their 100% record on the line against the Scolari led Guangzhou Evergrande. R&F have not conceded a goal this season and third place Evergrande will have their work cut out. Victory for the champions will see them draw level with the visiting Guangzhou R&F. The visitors will be looking to create separation between their city-rivals.

Runners-up Jiangsu Sunning have another chance to put their season back on track as they take on 13th place Chongqing Lifan at home. Jiangsu have started the season poorly and have just one point from nine so far. Chongqing are not doing much better and will be looking to bounce back from a 2-0 reverse against Tianjin TEDA.

The Capital team will be looking to follow up their impressive win over Shanghai Shenhua with a home win against Henan Jianye. Henan have taken just two points this season and were defeated by newly promoted Tianjin Quanjian. A victory for Beijing will put them firmly in the race for Champions League qualification.

Newly promoted Guizhou Zhicheng will be looking for their first victory this season against Tianjin TEDA. The two are just points apart. Tianjin will be looking to follow up their win last week with another one this week. Guizhou, however, will be no pushovers.

Hebei China take on a Carlos Tevez led Shanghai Shenhua in their encounter this week. Shanghai will be looking to become more consistent and bounce back from the defeat in the China Derby last week. Heibei have Shanghai in their crosshairs and aim to continue their ascent in the table.

Lowly Changchun Yatai are the only team still without a point and they will be looking to change that against 5th place Liaoning Whowin. The odds are heavily stacked against Changchun, who will be lucky to earn anything despite being home. They have to change something quick or risk a relegation battle.

The Fabio Cannavaro led Tianjin Quanjian welcome Yanbian Funde in this week’s last match. Yanbian have had a rather disappointing start to the season and have just a draw to their name. Tianjin, however, are sitting comfortably in the top half. Tianjin will be expected to get a result out of this one and further enhance their growing reputation.